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US can adjust laws for energy coop with India: Govt

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Nov 23 (UNI) The July 18 Joint Statement signed between India and the US reflected a number of actions that both the nations would reciprocally undertake to achieve full civil nuclear energy cooperation, the Rajya Sabha was informed today.

Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office Prithviraj Chavan said in a written reply that in the July 18 Joint Statement, US President Bush had agreed that he could seek the agreement of the US Congress to adjust US laws and policies to enable full civil nuclear energy cooperation and trade with India.

The President has already approached the Congress, he said and added that the House of Representatives had already approved legislation allowing a presidential waiver from certain sections of the current US legislation that inhibited the civilian nuclear cooperation with India. Similar legislation has been adopted in the Senate.

The two Bills will be reconciled and a single Bill submitted to the House and Senate for adoption.

On the setting up of four new sites for nuclear generation, Mr Chavan said the Government has constituted a Site Selection Committee (SSC) to locate suitable coastal sites for setting up nuclear power plants based on imports with a total power capacity of 6000 to 10,000 MWe at each site.

The SSC is presently evaluating sites offered by the State Governments of all coastal states including Orissa.

Replying on reforms in nuclear power sector, the Minister informed that a proposal to amend the Atomic Energy Act, 1962 to enable private sector participation in nuclear power generation in the country has been under consideration of the Government.

However, no final decision has been taken.

Regarding selling of uranium to India, Mr Chavan said the Government has no information about any decision, in principle, by Australia to sell Uranium to India.


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